|A Battle of Mega Versus Max!
Mega Evolution VS Kyodaimax
||November 5, 2021
||May 26, 2022
A Battle of Mega Versus Max! (Japanese: メガシンカ対キョダイマックス Mega Evolution VS Kyodaimax) is the 86th episode of Pokémon Journeys: The Series, and the 1,171st episode of the Pokémon anime. It first aired in Japan on November 5, 2021, in Canada on February 26, 2022, in South Africa on April 19, 2022, in Australia on May 12, 2022, and in the United States on May 26, 2022.
Continuing their World Coronation Series Ultra Class battle, Ash, Bea, and their Pokémon continue to bring incredible excitement to the stadium! Bea’s battling style is fierce as usual, and her Fighting-type Pokémon unleash one skilled move after another. But Ash continues to come up with unusual ways to battle on the fly, which prompts real respect from his Gym Leader opponent. When Bea Gigantamaxes her Machamp and Ash Mega Evolves his Lucario, the intensity reaches a whole new level. Lucario’s newly enhanced power manages to overwhelm Machamp, and Ash emerges victorious, bringing him one step closer to a chance at battling Leon!
Ash and Bea's second World Coronation Series rematch at the Stow-on-Side Stadium continues with Bea's Machamp holding back Ash's Lucario's Reversal with Strength. However, with some quick thinking, Lucario transfers the attack energy from its fists to its feet and strikes Machamp, freeing itself from the Superpower Pokémon's grasp. Ash then switches Lucario out in favor of Sirfetch'd. In the stands, Goh is surprised, as he had been expecting Ash to use Dragonite, but Korrina explains that Ash wants to face Bea's Pokémon with his own Fighting types.
Sirfetch'd makes its first move with Fury Cutter. Bea launches a counterattack with Bullet Punch, but Sirfetch'd's attack manages to find an opening and hit Machamp. Bea then performs her own switch, recalling Machamp and sending out Hawlucha. While Hawlucha's Flying Press is blocked by Sirfetch'd's shield, the Wrestling Pokémon easily dodges both a Night Slash and a Brutal Swing, before using Sky Attack. Sirfetch'd meets the attack with a Night Slash, but is overpowered and defeated, giving Bea the first knockout of the match.
Ash recalls Sirfetch'd and has Pikachu take its place on the battlefield. Hawlucha starts charging up for a Sky Attack again, dodging Pikachu's Thunderbolt while doing so. Thinking fast, Ash has Pikachu use Iron Tail on the ground and use Quick Attack while standing on his tail, causing his body to start vibrating rapidly. Hawlucha's Sky Attack strikes, but ends up being blown back by Pikachu's vibrations, although both sides suffer damage as a result. This strategy reminds Goh of the strategy Ash used against Visquez at the Vermilion Gym, although back then, only Iron Tail was used. Korrina explains that using Quick Attack created ultrasonic vibrations around Pikachu, which lessened the damage he took from Sky Attack and also dealt some damage on his opponent. Bea admits her admiration towards Ash's improvisational skills as she commands Hawlucha to use High Jump Kick. However, the attack is intercepted by a Thunderbolt from Pikachu, dealing super effective damage on Hawlucha and defeating it, leaving both Trainers with two Pokémon each.
Bea recalls Hawlucha and sends out Grapploct. Pikachu uses Quick Attack, but while the move makes contact, it also allows Grapploct to ensnare Pikachu in a tight Octolock. Ash calls for a Thunderbolt, but when it becomes clear that Octolock is preventing Pikachu from gathering enough strength to use the move, he instead tells him to relax and stop struggling against the move. Bea, however, won't fall for this tactic again, and has Grapploct strike Pikachu with a relentless Close Combat, taking him out of the fight and leaving Ash with just one Pokémon.
Ash retrieves Pikachu and sends out Lucario. Wanting to preserve Lucario's strength for Machamp, Ash decides to settle things with Grapploct with a single move, ordering an Aura Sphere, while Bea calls for a Liquidation. The two moves clash, but Lucario's attack pushes through, defeating Grapploct. Bea recalls her defeated partner and sends out Machamp, declaring that she'll dig in her heels.
Knowing that their Pokémon have already taken considerable damage, Ash and Bea prepare for the final clash. Bea recalls Machamp, actually smiling at how exciting the battle has been, before declaring that Ash is worthy of her respect, and Gigantamaxes Machamp with her Dynamax Band. Ash responds by tapping his Key Stone, which reacts with Lucario's Lucarionite and causes the Aura Pokémon to Mega Evolve. Lucario attacks with Aura Sphere, which clashes with Machamp's Max Steelspike, canceling both moves out. Lucario next charges in for a Force Palm. Despite getting thrown back by Max Strike, Lucario quickly regains its footing and lands the attack anyway. Machamp charges Dynamax power into its fists before executing its signature G-Max Move: G-Max Chi Strike. Ash tells Lucario to brace itself, and while the devasting move connects, Lucario manages to endure it, surprising Bea.
Lucario starts its counterattack, running up Machamp's arm and striking it in the face with an Aura Sphere. The impact causes the giant Pokémon to topple and revert to normal size. However, it is not defeated yet, and its power boost from its G-Max Move still remains. As Lucario charges in, Machamp uses this power boost to locate Lucario's weak spot, and attacks towards it with Bullet Punch, while Lucario meets the attack with a Force Palm. While the two Pokémon attempt to overpower each other, Lucario's Force Palm suddenly transforms into a new move. In the announcer's booth, Leon recognizes the move as Steel Beam. Lucario's Steel-type move powers through and strikes Machamp, creating an explosion. When the smoke clears, Machamp attemps to stand back up, but quickly collapses. With this knockout, the Drone Rotom rules Ash as the winner of the match. Lucario reverts to normal and collapses on its Trainer's arms, Ash's rank rises to 36, and Leon leads the audience into an applause before departing.
That evening, Ash, Goh, Korrina, and Bea stand on the empty Stadium's battlefield. Goh and Korrina congratulate Ash on his victory, while Ash laments on Leon leaving so soon after the match. However, Bea figures this is for the best, saying they should only meet on a battlefield. Bea promises to Ash that they'll battle again someday, sharing a fist bump with him and finally referring to him by his name, showing that she finally acknowledges him.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline.
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